The Return of Big Spending Republicans?

Under President Obama, Republicans grew accustomed to their role opposing the prevailing winds of Big Government. Apparently the fastest way to turn conservative hawks into libertarian doves is to elect a national security hawk and Democrat as president. Now, the Right’s small-government rhetoric will be put to several key tests. Chief among them is whether they will bring military and entitlement spending under control, or let the national debt grow to even more unsustainable levels. Ivan Eland (Director of the Center on Peace & Liberty at the Independent Institute) spent 15 years working for Congress on national security issues, and served as Principal Defense Analyst at the Congressional Budget Office; he knows a national security threat when he sees one. He joins Bob to point out the elephant in the room – one that's not going anywhere just because of the new “elephant” in the oval office. Eland identifies the United States’ precarious fiscal situation as the single greatest threat to our security, citing retired Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mike Mullen as one authority who can read the writing on the wall. President Trump may talk a big game when it comes to cutting wasteful military spending, but will he keep his promises to scale back U.S. intervention in the Middle East and elsewhere?

A. Trevor Thrall on Millennials' Attitudes Towards Foreign Policy

The recent 15th anniversary of 9/11 came and went with little ceremony, indicating that the symbolic resonance of the events may be gradually fading. For younger Americans, including some of the "millennial" generation born between 1980 and 1997, the events can hardly be remembered at all. What looms larger in millennials' minds is the War on Terror that has been waged in the wake of the attacks – the botched foreign interventions and erosion and civil liberties at home under the pretext of national security. Trevor Thrall is a professor at George Mason University's Schar School of Policy and Government and a Senior Fellow at the Cato Institute's Defense and Foreign Policy Department who has a particular interest in millennials' attitudes toward foreign policy. Last year, Thrall and his colleague Erik Goepner published a paper, Millennials and U.S. Foreign Policy: The next Generation’s Attitudes Toward Foreign Policy and War (and Why They Matter)exploring the impact of events that occurred in millennials' formative years on their perception of different threats and the appropriate response to them today. Does their skepticism about using force abroad mean that we are in good hands, or have the events since 9/11 led the rising generation to underestimate real threats apart from terrorism? Find out , on this week's episode of the Bob Zadek Show.